Daily News: August 25, 2014

CFA: ABLs See Encouraging Signs in Utilization Growth

Hopeful signs for the economy emerged as the Commercial Finance Association (CFA) released its Quarterly Asset-Based Lending (ABL) Index Q2 2014, showing that U.S. businesses utilized 43.1% of their credit lines during the 2nd quarter, a significant increase of two full percentage points (5%) from the first quarter and 0.7 percentage points (1.6%) from the same period in 2013.

CFA’s ABL Index, based on information provided by 27 of the nation’s top asset-based lenders, showed that total committed credit lines grew 1.6% over the previous quarter and 6.0% over the same period one year ago.

The CFA said total committed credit lines amounted to nearly $204 billion at the end of the Q2 2014. While credit line utilization has consistently increased over the past four years, companies continue to utilize credit at levels significantly below levels in the years before the financial crisis when utilization of credit lines by U.S. businesses was generally higher than 50%.

The CFA noted that new credit commitments increased by 9.6% over the previous quarter when severe winter weather dampened productivity in many areas of the U.S. New credit commitments during the second quarter, totaling $8 billion, were up 11.1% over the same period in 2013.

To view a chart showing Credit Utilization Growth Over The Past Six Quarters, click here.